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Self-Portrait of an Artist
Detail of the self-portrait of Maria Ormain degli Albizzi, 15th century nun & manuscript illuminator.
Image from Wikipedia.
You will be selecting a work of art by a woman or non-binary artist that will be the inspiration for this project. The project will manifest itself in three parts:
- You will be writing a 7-8 page research paper that will detail the history of the work and the artist, contextualizing that work historically and culturally. Additionally, you will examine it with a contemporary critical eye, exploring the work through societal and ethical lenses.
- You will then create a 5-7 minute presentation utilizing visual aids, curating your paper and research into an engaging learning experience for your classmates.
- Finally, you will create a work of art inspired by your subject matter, interacting with the subject matter in a personal and investigative way.
Getting started with Library Resources
Make use of your library. It has a staff of nine professionals who acquire, organize, and make available to you quality resources for your academic work at college. Sometimes talking with a person who has 25 years experience in helping students with research is better than trying to figure it out alone. Google had been around 20 years. Libraries 4,000 years. We must be doing something right.
Subject encyclopedias provide you with background information written and edited by scholars. Bettery yet, let those scholars do some of the work for you. Check the bibliography at the end of the article for citations for books and journal articles the scholar used as sources for their articles. Now they can become your sources!
Selected Reference Books
Dictionary of Women Artists
Call Number: Ref. N8354 .D53 1997
Dictionary of Artists
Call Number: Ref. N40 .B4713 2006
Dictionary of Art
Call Number: Ref. N31 .D5 1996
Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia
Call Number: Ref. HQ1115 .W6 1999
17 volumes. See Volume 17, p. 397 for a list of female artists by their medium.
A great place to start your research. Encyclopedias, dictionaries, Mind Map, and links to our other databases.
Gale Virtual Reference Library
Over 2,600 encyclopedias & reference works on a wide range of disciplines & topics.
Consider these resources for an overview of American life, decade by decade.
American Decades, 1900 - 2009
Call Number: Ref. E169.12 .A419 1994
Each volume of this 11 volume set covers a decade of American history, spanning 1900 - 2009. Volumes sections include world events, arts, business & economy, arts, education, fashion, government & politics, law & justice, lifestyle & social trends, media, medicine & health, religion, science & technology, and sports.
Social History of the United States
Call Number: Ref. HN57 .S63x 2009
The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Daily Life in America
Call Number: Ref. E169.1 .G7553 2009
By examining the cultures and traditions of differing peoples and regions, these four volumes trace the evolution of daily life in America from 1763 to 2005.
American Pop: American Popular Culture by the Decade
Call Number: Ref. 169.1 .A4475 2009
Four volume set covers the years 1900 – 2000. Coverage of each decade includes American life; advertising; architecture; books; newspapers, magazines, and comics; entertainment, fashion, food; music; sports and leisure activities; travel; and visual arts.
If you are looking for the experiences of a particular group in American culture, such as women, African Americans, or LGBTQ, browse our collection of scholarly encyclopedias.
For a serendipitous experience, browse our digitized run of Life magazine. The ads are fascinating and might reveal more than the articles. The New York Times is our only paper with a complete run of issues going back over 100 years. The Illustrated London News is a weekly that would give a UK perspective to events.
And remember, if you are looking for coverage of a specific event, it doesn't show up in a newspaper on the day it happens ;).
Use ScholastiCAT to search for print books shelved in the College Library. The Acadeimc eBook Collection consisits of digitized print books and count as a "physical book." We can borrow books from other libraries for you through Interlibrary Loan. If you are not familiar with ILL, stop by the library and ask and someone will show you the (fast &easy) process.
ScholastiCAT is the Library's catalogue, a listing of its books by author, title, & subject. Videos are also included. ScholastiCAT will search all of our print books, our video & media, and a portion of our e-books collections.
Academic eBook Collection
211,193 current academic titles.
Use MnPals to request books from other libraries in the state of Minnesota. Allow a week for books to arrive. WorldCAT searches the entire US and the libraries of many other countries. Therefore it is may be possible to borrow a book you find here, and it may not. Once you locate a book in Worlcat, you will have to manually fill our a request form here.
Search for books at other MN colleges.
Search for books in the major academic & public libraries of the United States and thirteen other countries.
Periodicals is generic term, but we often use if for what we commonly refer to as magazines & newspapers ... (aah, because they come out periodically). This will be your best bet for finding contemporary accounts of your artist or an event your artist was involved in.
Library databases will allow you to limit to either magazines or newspapers. If a database is strictly for newspapers, there is no need for this limiter.
Academic Search Premier
Our database with the broadest coverage of all disciplines.
Gale Academic OneFile
Coverage of the physical sciences, technology, medicine, social sciences, the arts, theology, literature and other subjects.
Gale OneFile: Fine Arts
Over 5 million articles and over 150 journals indexed in Art Index and RILM.
"Google" all the Library's great resources.
Landing page for various newspaper collections provided by Readex. National & international coverage. Also includes broadcast transcripts, newswire sources, and historical collections.
Gale OneFile: News
Over 1,100 newspapers plus images, radio & TV broadcasts, and transcripts.
National, regional, and local newspapers with some coverage dating back to 1980. Also includes Hispanic newspapers and transcripts & video from CBS’ new magazine, 60 Minutes.
New York Times, Historical (1851-2017)
Complete digitized New York Times, from its first edition in 1851 to five years from the present.
Illustrated London News Historical Archive
The world's first illustrated newspaper. Complete digitized run, 1845-2003.
Journals are an important form of scholarly communication. Most articles will be under copyright, which means you will probably not be able to access the full-text of an article through a search on Google. Academic libraries provide access to journal articles to students through databases.
After you have searched for your artist, look in either the right or left-hand column of the results page to limit to journal articles - common terms used for this are academic journal, peer-reviewed journal, of scholarly journal.
For older journal articles. May be useful depending on which artist you have selected.
Sarah Brokke Erickson
Assistant Professor | Director of Art
Office: T4112 | Phone: 218.723.6723
Visit her Gallery